Although Ezra Furman’s latest UK tour bypasses London, he’s back in the capital in October.
The singer, who performs at this weekend’s BBC 6 Music Festival, has announced a headline show at the Roundhouse on 31 October 2016. And he’s shared a lyric video for new single, ‘Ordinary Life’.
Out on 12 February, the latest release from his 2015 album, ‘Perpetual Motion People’, was inspired by transgender American author, playwright, performance artist, and gender theorist Kate Bornstein.
“She’s struggled a lot with depression and suicidal thoughts,” elaborates Ezra. “She said: ‘Do anything you have to do to make your life worth living, break the law, run away from home, destroy your possessions; just don’t be mean to people.’
“I meet a lot of fans in need, and in pain. I feel desperate a lot too – desperate to shake people by the shoulders and try to explain something, I’m just not sure what.”
The new single follows ‘Body Was Made’, released late last year, which Ezra describes as “a protest song against the people and forces that would make me ashamed of my body, my gender and my sexuality. It’s a declaration of freedom from false authority and self-appointed social police who have given me grief all my life.”
It’s clear then that there’s a lot more to ‘Perpetual Motion People’ than its memorable hooks. Recorded with Furman’s band The Boyfriends (bassist Jorgen Jorgensen, guitarist/keyboard player Ben Joseph, drummer Sam Durkes, and saxophonist Tim Sandusky), the follow up to ‘The Year of No Returning’ and ‘Day Of The Dog’, kicks off with mission statement ‘Reckless Year’.
“The opening lines of my records tend to be summary statements,” reveals Furman. “Every year has been restless, physically and even more internally.”
Which explains the title, ‘Perpetual Motion People’.
“That’s who it was made by and that’s who it’s for. People who feel they can never settle. I’m restless in most aspects. I don’t tend to live in one place for long. I am always changing the way I present my gender. My religious life is intensely up and down in terms of observance and personal convictions. I’ve always viewed the idea of truth itself as something wobbly, always slipping out of our grasp. That’s what the songs are about: a head that is haunted, a society I cannot join, a lover who is perpetually in the act of leaving. A central idea is the fugitive or runaway, in a hideout built in the midst of an unfriendly or alienated world.”
It turns out that life in perpetual motion is “a good way to be,” believes Furman.
“If you are never sure footing, you don’t get bored and the world is always new. It causes a lot of pain as well, but it seems worth it, and it is probably the only way I know how to be.”
- Tickets to Ezra Furman’s show at The Roundhouse, London, go on general sale on 12 February.